Los Angeles County lifeguards said they rescued swimmers and surfers caught in rip currents up and down the coast Tuesday and similar conditions are continuing.
Lifeguard Lidia Barillas says 18 people were rescued off Venice Beach alone.
A southern swell brought the powerful currents to Los Angeles County beaches around 3 p.m. Tuesday. The currents are expected to continue through Friday. So are high temperatures and high humidity, which will drive many people to the beaches for relief.
The National Weather Service has issued a beach hazards statement for Orange and San Diego counties due to the danger of rip currents and elevated surf caused by the swell.
Lifeguards suggest that people going into the water do so close to a lifeguard tower.